The Gollapudi Srinivas National Award for 2009, instituted by the Gollapudi Srinivas Memorial foundation was awarded to Amit Rai for his Hindi film Road to Sangam.
The film was selected from 15 other nominations from across the country in English, Malayalam, Marathi, Tamil, Hindi, Telugu and Bengali.
The award comprising a cash prize of Rs. 1.5 lakh and a memento will be presented at a ceremony on August 12.
Road to Sangam is an intelligent and absorbing patriotic film to have come out after a long time. It is an honest statement of a director who empathises with the protagonist and indicates that however strong and right the institution may be, an individual at his level can find solutions with his personal integrity and honesty. This is the simple prescription to an otherwise complex monolith which is trouble-torn in the name of beliefs and values.
Mr. Rai earned his master's degree in dramatics from the Centre of Performing Arts, Pune University. He has been active for the past 14 years, attending several workshops at the National School of Drama and his interest led him to film-making. Mr. Rai also directed the internationally acclaimed Marathi film Tingya, for which he received the best director award at the International Film Festival of South Africa, 2009.
The present award is instituted by writer and actor Gollapudi Maruthi Rao and his family, to perpetuate the memory of his son Srinivas, who died in 1992 in an accident during the shooting of his debut movie.
The foundation has celebrated the success of 12 debut directors since 1998.